hong kong inside outside
by michael wolf
for more than 14 years german photographer michael wolf has been living in hong kong. focused on the specific visual elements he has depicted high density living in one of the world’s most crowded cities like nobody has before. hong kong inside outside combines two major series of his work titled architecture of density and 100 x 100.
for architecture of density, wolf fashioned a distinctive style of photography. he removes any sky or horizon line from the frame and flattens the space until it becomes a relentless abstraction of urban expansion, with no escape for the viewer’s eye. wolf photographs crumbling buildings in need of repair, brand new buildings under construction covered in bamboo scaffolding, as well as fully occupied residential complexes. wolf’s disorienting vantage point gives the viewer the feeling that the buildings extend indefinitely, which perhaps is the spatial experience of hong kong’s inhabitants.
as a way to investigate the social ramifications of living in such dense conditions, with his series 100 x 100 wolf juxtaposes the anonymity of the exterior residential complexes in architecture of density with interior portraits of 100 individuals and families surrounded by all their belongings living in public housing consisting of identical 100-square-foot apartments allocated to each family. he obtains the same vantage point for each picture forming a typology that allows the viewer to study how the individuals make the confined spaces their own.
two books in a slipcase
numerous full color images
co-published by asia one books (hong kong) and peperoni books (germany), 2009
isbn: 978-3-941825-04-8 (europe and usa) 978-988-17998-7-6 (hong kong)